Erika Engelhaupt

Erika Engelhaupt is a freelance science writer and editor based in Knoxville, Tenn. She began her blog, Gory Details, while she was an editor at Science News. She continues the blog at National Geographic, where she was online science editor and managed the Phenomena science blog network. Her work has also appeared at NPR, the Philadelphia Inquirer, the Story Collider podcast, and in other newspapers and magazines. 

All Stories by Erika Engelhaupt

  1. Anthropology

    Neanderthals reveal their diet with oldest excrement

    50,000-year-old fossil poop hints at Neanderthals’ omnivorous, but meat-heavy, diet.

  2. voodoo doll
    Psychology

    Why stabbing a voodoo doll is so satisfying

    To measure how aggressive a person is, psychologists turn to voodoo dolls and hot sauce.

  3. Health & Medicine

    Urine is not sterile, and neither is the rest of you

    Despite what the Internet says, urine does contain bacteria, a new study finds. And so does your brain, the womb, and pretty much everywhere else.

  4. Animals

    Anemone eats bird, and other surprising animal meals

    A fuzzy green anemone eating a bird many times its size shows that you can’t take anything for granted when it comes to which animals can eat each other.

  5. Psychology

    Why every face you draw looks a little Neandertal

    Just about everyone draws faces with the eyes too high and a low Neandertal forehead, maybe because of the way we perceive the shape of the head.

  6. Psychology

    Leonardo da Vinci may have invented 3-D image with ‘Mona Lisa’

    A mysterious copy of the ‘Mona Lisa’ combines with the Louvre painting to make a stereoscopic image of the woman with the enigmatic smile.

  7. Humans

    Could the menstrual cycle have shaped the evolution of music?

    A new study suggesting that women select better musicians shows how women’s role in evolution is being redefined.

  8. Life

    Find your inner fish with PBS series on human evolution

    A new documentary explores how the human body came together over 3.5 billion years of animal evolution.

  9. Chemistry

    How urine will get us to Mars

    A new recycling system turns pee into drinking water and energy, a small step toward really long-term space travel.

  10. don't pee in the pool
    Chemistry

    This is what happens when you pee in the pool

    Swimming pools are basically chemical toilets, but here’s why I’ll keep swimming.

  11. Health & Medicine

    This rare skull-thickening disease led to a 3-D-printed replacement

    A skull implant made with a 3-D printer replaced the 2-inch-thick skull of a Dutch woman with the rare van Buchem disease.

  12. Psychology

    Your fear is written all over your face, in heat

    Thermal images of bank clerks who’ve been robbed reveal a cold nose can be a sign of post-traumatic stress disorder, or PTSD.